John Tower

Family tree of John Tower

American politician

AmericanBorn John Goodwin Tower

American politician and military officer

Born on September 29, 1925 in Houston, Texas , United States

Died on April 5, 1991 in Brunswick, Georgia , United States

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John Goodwin Tower (September 29, 1925 – April 5, 1991) was an American politician and military veteran who represented Texas in the United States Senate from 1961 to 1985. He was the first Republican elected to the U.S. Senate from Texas since Reconstruction. Tower is known for leading the Tower Commission, which investigated the Iran-Contra Affair in the Reagan administration.
Born in Houston, Texas, he served in the Pacific Theater of World War II. After the war, he worked as a radio announcer and taught at Midwestern University (now Midwestern State University) in Wichita Falls. He switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in the early 1950s and worked on the 1956 presidential campaign of Dwight D. Eisenhower. Tower lost Texas's 1960 Senate election to Democratic Senator Lyndon B. Johnson, but performed relatively well compared to his Republican predecessors. With the Democratic victory in the 1960 presidential election, Johnson vacated his Senate seat to become Vice President of the United States. In the 1961 special election, Tower defeated Johnson's appointed successor, Bill Blakley. He won re-election in 1966, 1972, and 1978.
Upon joining the Senate in 1961, Tower became the first Republican Senator to represent a state in the South since 1913. He was the only Southern Republican in the Senate until Strom Thurmond switched parties in 1964. A political conservative earlier in his career, Tower staunchly opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Starting in 1976 with his support of Gerald Ford rather than Ronald Reagan in the 1976 Republican primaries, Tower began to alienate many fellow conservatives. He became less conservative over time, later voicing support for legal abortion, gay rights, and opposing President Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative in 1983.
...   John Goodwin Tower (September 29, 1925 – April 5, 1991) was an American politician and military veteran who represented Texas in the United States Senate from 1961 to 1985. He was the first Republican elected to the U.S. Senate from Texas since Reconstruction. Tower is known for leading the Tower Commission, which investigated the Iran-Contra Affair in the Reagan administration.
Born in Houston, Texas, he served in the Pacific Theater of World War II. After the war, he worked as a radio announcer and taught at Midwestern University (now Midwestern State University) in Wichita Falls. He switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in the early 1950s and worked on the 1956 presidential campaign of Dwight D. Eisenhower. Tower lost Texas's 1960 Senate election to Democratic Senator Lyndon B. Johnson, but performed relatively well compared to his Republican predecessors. With the Democratic victory in the 1960 presidential election, Johnson vacated his Senate seat to become Vice President of the United States. In the 1961 special election, Tower defeated Johnson's appointed successor, Bill Blakley. He won re-election in 1966, 1972, and 1978.
Upon joining the Senate in 1961, Tower became the first Republican Senator to represent a state in the South since 1913. He was the only Southern Republican in the Senate until Strom Thurmond switched parties in 1964. A political conservative earlier in his career, Tower staunchly opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Starting in 1976 with his support of Gerald Ford rather than Ronald Reagan in the 1976 Republican primaries, Tower began to alienate many fellow conservatives. He became less conservative over time, later voicing support for legal abortion, gay rights, and opposing President Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative in 1983.
Tower retired from the Senate in 1985. After leaving Congress, he served as chief negotiator of the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks with the Soviet Union and led the Tower Commission. The commission's report was highly critical of the Reagan administration's relations with Iran and the Contras. In 1989, incoming President George H. W. Bush chose Tower as his nominee for Secretary of Defense, but his nomination was rejected by the Senate. After the defeat, Tower chaired the President's Intelligence Advisory Board. Tower died in the 1991 Atlantic Southeast Airlines Flight 2311 crash.



Biography from Wikipedia (see original) under licence CC BY-SA 3.0

 

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